When it comes to the world of sport, we often hear the names of performers and players long after they finish. Head to major stadia around the world, and stands are often named after people who have long since departed the team. This is the power of being a legend and giving back to your community or your country. How, though, are sporting legends actually born?
What does it take for someone to go from being a good, steady professional who is remembered fondly to a genuine legend of the sport that they played before?
Always giving their all
The main thing that can make a legend is being the person in a team who never gives up. Teams can go through peaks and troughs, yet fans will rarely – if ever – accept a team that is not giving their all. With that in mind, you can imagine that a legend is the kind of person who was usually seen giving it 100% even when the game was completely gone.
Fans remember this, and it helps to build the legend of a player.
Bailing the team out
Most legends tend to get their legendary status because they stepped up to achieve something special when the team needed them most. Players and coaches will often become legends because they stepped up when the odds were against their team. When there is more needed to try and get a team out of the fire, bailing the team out becomes the priority. That is why legends are often born though their actions when everyone else appears to have given up hope.
Achieving something new
Legends are also typically born when they help to achieve something special for the first time. For example, take the example of Pele, who played a role in becoming a 1962 World Cup Winner with his country. This helped to cement his legend, ensuring that Brazil could become one of the leading names in the world of football worldwide. They established a legend that was built on the back of achieving a unique accomplishment: in this case, international success.
Going above and beyond
Of course, a player who goes down as a legend will often do so because they go above and beyond when it matters. Playing through injury to achieve success, playing through personal tragedy, or even simply giving their funds back to a team that was in financial disarray are signs of a player who is set for legendary status.
Going above and beyond the call of duty is the kind of action that a fanbase will almost always remember.
Giving back outside of sport
Of course, it isn’t all about what the legend done within the sport. It could come down to their political actions, their actions within their community, or their charity work. Legends are often remembered fondly for their feats on the sporting field as much as the feats they achieve when they are simply being an ordinary person going about their normal day-to-day existence.